A court yesterday ruled against a Frenchman’s request to transfer ownership of an apartment that he paid for from his former father-in-law after his marriage to a Taiwanese woman turned sour, on the grounds that the property was a “gift.”
The Taipei District Court said Jacques Moskovic got engaged to a woman surnamed Chao (趙), 37 years his junior, in 2006.
Moskovic then purchased an apartment for NT$26 million (US$881,400) in Taipei’s Xinyi District (信義) the following February before the couple got married.
The property was put under the name of Chao’s father, it said.
The verdict said that Moskovic filed for divorce last year and filed a lawsuit requesting ownership of the apartment.
Moskovic argued that he purchased the property only because he was getting married. He said he was worried that he would have problems getting a loan as a foreigner and because Chao did not have a job, he bought the apartment in her father’s name, the verdict said.
The verdict added that Moskovic contended he paid the down payment on the apartment, as well as the interest, and that he had given Chao about NT$4 million to pay the monthly mortgage fees.
Moskovic said he also gave Chao NT$38 million to invest on the stock market and in real estate, the court said.
However, the woman’s father argued that Moskovic promised to provide for all of Chao’s needs and contended that the money was a gift.
The court ruled that the apartment was a gift from Moskovic because he was unable to provide evidence to prove he was only using his former father-in-law’s name to register the property.
The court sided with Chao’s argument that Moskovic gave her the apartment to convince her father that he would give her a “wealthy life,” the verdict added.
The case can be appealed.